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Glittering Fragments

for string quartet

Year:  1994

Year:  1994

Films, Audio & Samples

Patrick Shepherd: Glitterin...

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This work was originally conceived following a visit to Egypt at the time of Desert Storm. Curfews were being imposed and the whole situation in the region was extremely volatile. Hara Tamiki's poem was forefront in my mind as, yet again, the world approached the definite possibility of nuclear conflict. The melodic shapes were originally constructed from the shapes of Arabic script on newspaper headlines and the structure roughly mirroring Tamiki's poem, with flashes of activity and then opaque harmonies, 'burning red then dulled'. The work was completed in 1994 and premiered by the New Zealand String Quartet, to whom it is dedicated, in a nationwide tour in 1995 entitled 'Hot Young Things' showcasing the work of emergent composers. The work has undergone several slight revisions since then, with the final one in 2006 being typesetting using Sibelius software from the original handwritten manuscript. In this edition, some typographical changes were made for ease of reading and interpretation along with recommendations made by the NZSQ. The main addition was the 'cutaway' staves, which are not present in the original manuscript. This allows me to represent visually the sense of both the music and the text, I feel, adds much to the concept behind this work.

Dedication note

Dedicated to the New Zealand String Quartet

Text note

on text by Hara Tamiki

Performance history

14 Sep 1995: Performed by the New Zealand String Quartet